oscar isaac resistance

Oscar Isaac, great actor and all-around handsome fellow, is out there promoting Operation Finale. But if you thought he’d get through this press tour without answering some Star Wars: Episode 9 questions, think again. While the actor doesn’t offer any concrete details on the next Star Wars movie, he does have some interesting thoughts on the Resistance and their methods.

When we last saw the Resistance in Star War: The Last Jedi, they were on the run, their numbers severely depleted. But hope wasn’t lost. As Leia told Rey, “We have everything we need, especially Porgs.” (Alright, I made that last part up, but it was implied). So what’s next for the Resistance? USA Today tried to get some spoilers out of Oscar Isaac, and while the actor was predictably tight-lipped on specifics, he did talk about the Resistance as an entity. Specifically, Isaac compared the Resistance to guerrilla fighters, and Revolutionary War soldiers:

“[The Resistance] are guerrilla fighters, adhering closer to something like the Revolutionary War fighters or even the guerrillas in Cuba with Che and Fidel and all these guys living in the mountains, coming down to do some attacks, and going back and trying to hide from the ’empire’ of the United States. It’s that kind of ragged at this point…You hear about stories with (George) Washington as a general, where lots of people died based on their orders…but that is part of leadership and that push-and-pull in the fight for figuring out what’s the way to move forward.”

Time and time again, I see people complaining that “politics” should be left out of Star Wars, or any other sort of pop-entertainment. But that’s not how art works, and I love that Isaac isn’t shying away from a thoughtful, potentially controversial, answer like this. To recontextualize events in Star Wars through the lens of history is fascinating, and makes for an overall fuller experience when watching (or re-watching) the films. And this is nothing new. George Lucas, grandaddy of all things Star Wars, has always seen the series as nodding at events in history.

Speaking with the Chicago Tribune in 2015, Lucas said “[Star Wars] was really about the Vietnam War, and that was the period where Nixon was trying to run for a term, which got me to thinking historically about how do democracies get turned into dictatorships? Because the democracies aren’t overthrown; they’re given away.”

In other words, no matter how often people turn to YouTube or Twitter to angrily decry the politicalization of Star Wars, the simple fact of the matter is that it was always there, like it or not.

And what of the future? What of Episode IX? The only real info Isaac is willing to offer is to state the obvious. “It is a war movie,” the actor says. “I mean, above and beyond, it is a movie about warriors.”

Star Wars: Episode IX opens on December 20, 2019.

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